Scary Tales Movie Review

Pity poor Dennis Frye. He's a slob -- out of work and wholly unmotivated to find it. But when a myserious couple places a "looking for work?" sign in his local convenience store, Frye (Bill Cassinelli) is piqued.

Soon enough, he finds himself in a job placement office, where he is presented with a handful of job opportunities by the creepy Mr. Longfellow (Joel D. Wynkoop), each of which turns out to be worse than the last (though all culminate with poor Dennis's early demise). Longfellow leads him into the "what may come" future of employment, Creepshow-style, and it ain't pretty. His job as a catering cook is marred by the hit and run murder of a little girl -- followed by his stalking by a group of dolls. His work in a bookstore teaches him about Astral travel, and he soon finds himself trapped in Limbo forever. A final job is as a screenwriter (from a job placement agency, huh?) sends him on interview after interview, where he finds nothing but rejection -- until a reincarnated Edgar Allen Poe appears, whom Frye kills and buries in a shallow grave. Or was that someone else he killed in his drunken stupor?

Funny? Sometimes it is. But Scary? Well, not exactly -- those dolls don't even move, and there's nothing quite like a Cabbage Patch Kid to make you not be afraid. The stories are slow and not really horror-ish at all -- unless dolls, clocks, and large-breasted women make you fear for your life. The camerawork (shot on digital video) is actually not bad, using split screen, fast-motion, and other nifty effects, but the bad acting and spare script don't help to redeem the film. Cassinelli is a curiosity -- an obvious horror fan who would probably do better on the stand-up circuit than as a lead actor in a film. And especially not a horror film -- the few splatter effects are effective, but with a mere two or three in the entire 76-minute film, well, that's hardly what I call horror.

I took the video home for the holidays, and I'll sum it up with what my mother said when she watched a few minutes of the film: "If that guy was Brad Pitt, this wouldn't be half bad!"

Indeed.

Cast & Crew

Director : Michael Hoffman Jr.

Producer : , Michael Hoffman Jr.


Comments

Scary Tales Rating

" Grim "

Rating: NR, 2001

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